A privacy sweep conducted by the Global Privacy Enforcement Network some time ago shows that most of the kid’s apps and websites are failing to protect their privacy while they are online. This is shocking news for almost every parent out there, as most children are using these apps as they tout educational benefits, social development benefits, and are a way to ensure children are having fun while they are learning.
The Study of Kids’ Apps and Websites
The entire study was done with 29 protection regulators including protection regulators from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Germany. The results show that from the 1,494 websites designed for kids, about 67% collected personal information like birth, IP address, cookies, and photos. Most of these websites that collected the personal information share it with third parties. And, this is where the danger lies.
The result of the study was as followed:
- 67% collected children’s personal information,
- 31% had controls in place to limit the collection of personal information from children,
- 50% shared personal information with third parties,
- 22% provided an opportunity for children to give their phone number,
- 23% allowed users to upload photos or video,
- 58% offered children the opportunity to be redirected to a different website,
- 24% encouraged parental involvement,
- 71% did not offer an accessible means for deleting account information,
David Papp, the President of Microtek Corporation stated to Global News:
“These statistics on children’s personal information may provide parents and guardians with a moment of reflection to ask. Why do organizations want to know this much about my child? What are the potential benefits or harms to my child? How can I have more control over my child’s personal information? ”
How to Secure your Kids Apps and Websites
It is really important to make sure that your kid’s apps and websites are really and truly secure. The best websites are sites who don’t ask for any personal information in order to view these sites. However, some parents are okay with a small amount of information being requested. As a parent, it is your job to decide just how much, if any, personal information you are willing to share about your child online.
We advise you to have a look at our guide on how to protect your children online.